This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

NEW ORLEANS – The ribbon cutting ceremony for University Medical Center’s new primary care center took place Thursday morning. The facility will officially open their doors on Wednesday, December 20.

Lots of local elected and healthcare officials came out for the ceremony, including New Orleans Mayor Elect Latoya Cantrell.

The new $3.6 million center has an LSU Internal Medicine Clinic and a new UMC physician practice. UMC developed the primary care center to help fight the shortage of doctors in Orleans Parish.

“To address this community’s need, UMC has developed a new Primary Care Center that will provide our academic partner, LSU Health New Orleans, with increased capacity for its internal medicine clinic and will also house a new employed physician practice, staffed by two full-time internal medicine physicians: Dr. Kendria Holt- Rogers and Dr. Alan Gatz,” UMC Spokesperson Siona La France said.

President and the CEO of UMC New Orleans told WGNO that improving access to primary care is a major priority.

“What this new center means for the people of New Orleans is that we will have the access to preventative and primary care,” Bill Masterton said. “So, instead of the emergency room needing to be the medical home for members of our community, we now have access to a state of the art primary care center, before having to go to the emergency room. ”

The new center has 21 exam rooms, making a total of 41 available for LSU Internal Medicine and Tulane Medicine residents.